Fairfax Station


Wow- so much going on this weekend!  Better yet, it is going to feel like fall and be sunny all weekend.  Get out and enjoy it!  KidFriendly DC has a fantastic post about more Halloween related events coming up, so be sure to check it out as well.

Saturday, October 22nd

River Farm Fall Fest

9am – 12pm @ River Farm, Alexandria

Bring a picnic and the family to River Farm to enjoy story time in the garden, arts and crafts projects, a scavenger hunt, and more.  This event is free of charge, though donations are appreciated. Rain or shine (activities will be held indoors in the event of rain). For more details, call (703) 768-5700 ext. 126.

Annandale Fall Festival 

10am @  Safeway parking lot on Little River Turnpike, Annandale

Eighty merchants with jewelry, artwork, giftware, crafts, children’s toys & books, clothing, wood carvings and other gifts for your holiday shopping will fill the community market.  There will also be rock, jazz & country Bands along with International costumed dancers and swing dancersfor entertainment as well as tons of food.  The Kid’s Zone will challenge with a climbing wall, bungee jump, bungee basketball, face painting, Lil Pirate inflatable & toddler games, costumed characters, and The Secret Garden which will feature puppet shows at 1 & 3pm and The Traveling Storyteller at 12pm and 2pm along with interactive games for toddlers to teens.  The Annual Parade 10am – 12pm will finish at the festival grounds.

AppleFest

11am – 1pm @ Whole Foods Old Town, Alexandria

Transforming into a delicious orchard, Virginia Whole Foods Market’s AppleFest will be complete with inspiring cooking demonstrations, entertaining crafts, prizes, tastings and more! While exploring taste palates of sweet treats and savory apple infused dishes, customers will be exposed to and learn about the best apples that the harvest has to offer.   Featured activities will include mouth-watering samples and cooking demonstrations, carmel-apple making stations, hard apple cider on tap, apple sampling in every department, and apple scavenger hunts

Mousequerade Ball for Kids  

1pm – 2pm @ Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, Alexandria

Families with children ages 4 – 7 can enjoy a reading of Alexander the Old Town Mouse by author Cheryl Barnes and have their books signed. Children will then create a mask and enjoy a ball of their own — in the very same room the story takes place! Costumes are encouraged but not required.  This hour-long program will be held at 1:00pm and 3:00pm. $10 per child (ages 2 and older); adults free with purchase of child ticket.

Wild Side Wagon Ride  

4pm @ Huntley Meadows Park, Alexandria

Take a 90-minute tractor ride with a park naturalist to parts of the wetland that are difficult to reach on foot. Look for and learn about songbirds, wildflowers, butterflies and waterfowl, then stop for a snack at the observation platform. Meet at South King’s Highway park entrance.

Campfire: Popcorn

6pm – 7:15pm @ Long Branch Amphitheater, Arlington

The whole family is invited to join us at the Long Branch Amphitheater for lots of old-fashioned fun. This engaging program will be filled with entertaining activities, which may include stories, special animal guests, games, songs and of course, treats like s’mores.  Cost is $5 fee per person with a $20 max fee per family.

Fearless Fest

7pm @ Hidden Oaks Nature Center, Annandale

This fun event provides a lighthearted alternative to scary Halloween celebrations. The not-so-scary event is guaranteed to educate and entertain participants.  A naturalist will lead guests on a one-hour night hike into the woods to meet and interact with costumed creatures who explain away their scary reputations. The 52-acre forest surrounding the nature center is an ideal setting to hear ironic explanations from a black widow spider, a skunk, an owl, poison ivy, a dead tree, and other animals.  Indoor activities include craft projects and hands-on exploration. Guests will investigate real animal skulls in the graveyard, meet live reptiles and insects such as snakes, toads, and millipedes, and dissect owl pellets to learn about their diet and habitat.  The cost is $7 per Fairfax County resident and $9 for out-of-county guests. Families should bring a flashlight. This event is great for scout groups looking for a fun evening activity. Costumes are encouraged and are completely appropriate for the event’s festive, party-like atmosphere.

Sunday, October 23rd

Scarecrow Making Workshop

1pm & 2pm @ Frying Pan Farm Park, Herndon

Adults and children enjoy making scarecrows. Bring an outfit and a pair of pantyhose for each scarecrow.  They supply special touches for faces. Held outdoors, dress for the weather. Register to make a scarecrow. Canceled if rain.

Meet me on a Sunday at Potomac Overlook  

1:30pm – 3:30pm @ Potomac Overlook Regional Park, Arlington

Almost everyone needs more time in the great outdoors – time to take a walk, enjoy each others’ company, or to just sit and do nothing! So, come make a “natural connection” at Potomac Overlook Regional Park. Every Sunday afternoon, between 1:30 and 3:30 p.m., the park provides refreshments, games and hands-on nature exhibits, and a fun place to meet and enjoy the outdoors. There’s always something for families, groups, scouts, friends, couples, seniors . . . anyone!


Saturday, October 22nd & Sunday, October 23rd

Fall Harvest Family Days  

9am – 5pm @ Mount Vernon 

Mount Vernon welcomes the autumn season with Fall Harvest Family Days! The entire family enjoys autumn activities including wagon rides, wheat treading in the 16-sided barn, 18th-century dancing demonstrations, a straw bale maze, farrier (blacksmithing) demonstrations, apple-roasting, corn husk dolls demonstrations and early-American games and music. Potomac River sightseeing cruises are half-price during this weekend event. Fall Harvest Family Days are included in regular Estate admission on October 22&23: adults, $15.00; children ages 6-11, $7.00; and children 5 and under are admitted free.

Ghost Train Halloween Event  

10am – 5pm @ Burke Lake Park, Fairfax Station

Board the haunted train at Burke Lake Park for a special ride through the forest. Tickets are $4.50. The Ghost Train runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (last ticket sold 4:15 p.m.) Tickets for the carousel are $1.75. Costumes are encouraged! For more information, call 703-323-6600.

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Summertime is upon us, and it is a great time to get out of the house and take a ride (or watch one).  WIthin just a few miles, there are several miniature trains to ride, beautiful carousels to enjoy, and places to watch planes take off and land.

 


Trains









Burke Lake Regional Park Train, Fairfax Station, VA

This train is a one-third-scale replica C.P.Huntington.  It costs $2.50 for ages 3 and up (2 and under are free), and is open every day from Memorial Day through Labor Day.  The ride is over 1.75 miles and takes 10 minutes.  It reaches speeds of 10 to 12 miles per hour, and runs on the 15 and 45 past the hour.  The first train leaves at 11:15am and last train ride is 5:45pm

http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/parks/burkelake/

Cabin John Train, Rockville, MD

This miniature train is really affordable- $1.75 for ages 3 and up, free for 2 and under with adult.  The train is a replica of the 1863 C.P. Huntington, a 4-2-4T steam locomotive.  The train leaves on the half hour and hour, and is around a 15-minute ride.  Check out the talkative trash-eating pig and the hippo water fountain after the ride.  The train depot is just across the parking lot from the huge playground, so after the train you can head to the playground where there are 7-8 play areas within the shaded playground.  It is huge- there are places to climb, slide, run, and swing for all ages of kids.  There’s a lot of open space to run around.  You can also have lunch at one of several picnic tables.  This is one of our favorite parks!!  The train runs Monday – Thursday, 10am – 5:30pm (1st train at 10:30) and Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays & Holidays, 10am-7pm (1st train at 10:30; last train at 7:30pm) from June 1st – August 28th.
http://www.montgomeryparks.org/enterprise/park_facilities/trains/cabin_john.shtm 

Tysons Corner Center Train, McLean, VA

Tysons Corner Express indoor train is trackless and takes two loops around the 3rd level on the 8-minute ride.  Tickets are $3 each or $5 for two tickets.  The train starts out at the soft play area, and runs beside TGIFridays, by the movie theaters, and along the food court area.  The train is self-contained, and runs on batteries, which are charged overnight at the mall.

http://www.shoptysons.com/shopping/Details/51009

Wheaton Regional Park Train, Wheaton, MD

This is another great Maryland miniature train.  This train is a replica of the 1863 C.P. Huntington, a 4-2-4T steam locomotive.  A 12-minute ride, this train tours the park’s forests and meadows, through a tunnel, over a trestle bridge, and past Pine Lake.  It is located in the Shorefield Area of the park.  The train station is just a short walk from the parking lot, and tickets are $1.75 each (children age 2 and younger with a paying adult ride free).  The tickets are actually good for the carousel as well.  From May 1- August 28, the train is open 7 days a week.  From Monday – Thursday it runs from 10am – 5:30pm (1st train at 10:30; last train at 6pm), and Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays & Holidays it runs from 10am-7pm (1st train at 10:30; last train at 7:30pm).  The park also has a playground with many different play areas.  Check out Our Kid’s review– 

http://www.montgomeryparks.org/enterprise/park_facilities/trains/wheaton.shtm

 


Planes










Gravelly Point, Arlington, VA

One of the best places to see Reagan National (DCA) planes take off and land is Gravelly Point in Arlington.  Check out this post for more info. http://arlingtonmama.com/2010/05/26/gravelly-point/

Udvar-Hazy Air and Space Museum, Chantilly, VA

If you are closer to Dulles (IAD), go to the Udvar-Hazy Air and Space Museum in Chantilly.  You can watch planes land and take off from the Donald D. Engen observation tower.  Admission is free to the museum, but is is $15 to park.  After 4pm parking is free.

 


Carousels

 

 







Burke Lake Park Carousel, Fairfax Station, VA

This carousel runs on the hour and half hour, with the first train running at 11:30am.  The fee is $1.75, and from Memorial Day through Labor Day it is open every day.  To find both the train and carousel, as you drive into Burke Lake Park, stay left and follow the signs for the train and carousel.

http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/parks/burkelake/rides.htm

Clemyjontri Park Carousel, McLean, VA

This wheel chair accessible carousel runs from 9:30am – 1pm on weekdays  and 9:30am – 6:30pm on weekends from May 30th – Sept. 5th.  The cost is $1.75 per ride.  Kids under 42 inches must be accompanied by an adult, but this adult does not need a ticket to ride.  There are chariots, a spinning tea cup, and 14 prancing horses.  The carousel is recessed to ground level so that it is wheelchair accessible.

http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/parks/clemyjontri/carousel.htm

Frying Pan Farm Park Carousel, Herndon, VA

This carousel arrived just this year.  It is a 20-horse antique Allan Herschell carousel was built in 1918.  Tickets are $1.75.

http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/parks/fpp/

Glen Echo Carousel, Glen Echo, MD

This Dentzel Carousel was built in 1921.  The cost is $1.25 per ride, and all riders require a ticket.  There are jumping and standing horses, a giraffe, a lion, ostriches, rabbits, a tiger, a deer), and 2 chariots.  From June – August the carousel is open 10am – 2pm Wednesday – Thursday (also open on Fridays in July and August), and 12pm – 6pm on Saturday and Sunday.

http://www.glenechopark.org/node/48

Inner Harbor CarouselBaltimore, MD

It is an1906 antique Herschell-Spillman carousel with horses, dogs, pigs, roosters, zebras, frogs, and chariots.  It is located in downtown Baltimore at Inner Harbor next to Maryland Science Center.  Cost is $1.25 per person.

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Baltimore-Inner-Harbor-Carousel/

National Mall Carousel, Washington, DC

There are 60 animals (horses, cats, lions, zebras, dragons and more) on this Allan Herschel carousel, which was built in 1947.  Cost is $3.50, and an adult must ride with those under 42″.  It is open 10am – 5:30pm daily.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/gog/misc-locations/the-carousel-on-the-national-mall,1027953.html

Wheaton Regional Park Carousel, Wheaton, MD

This is an Ovid Hazen Wells Carousel built by the Herschell Spillman in 1915. There are horses, zebras, and chariots.  It is under a pavilion, which allows it to operate in the rain.  From May 1- August 28, it is open 7 days a week- Monday – Thursday from 10am-5:30pm, and Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays & Holidays from 10am-7pm.  Tickets are $1.75 each, and children age 2 and younger with a paying adult ride free.

http://www.montgomeryparks.org/enterprise/park_facilities/trains/wheaton.shtm